Editorial Policies

All PINS articles are open access, peer reviewed, and indexed.

All submissions are assessed by an Editor, who decides whether the article is suitable for peer review. Suitable submissions are assigned to two or more subject experts, who assess the article for clarity, validity, and sound methodology. If suitable experts external to the journal cannot be found, then members of the Editorial Board may be asked to complete the review.

Authors may be invited to recommend or ask for the exclusion of specific individuals from the peer review process. The journal does not guarantee use of these suggestions. All reviewers must be independent from the submission and will be asked to declare all competing interests.

The journal utilizes a double-blind peer review process, meaning that authors and reviewers remain anonymous for the review process. The review period is expected to take around six to eight weeks, although this can vary depending on reviewer availability. Reviewers are asked to provide formative feedback, even if an article is not deemed suitable for publication in the journal.

Based on the reviewer reports the editor will make a recommendation for rejection, minor or major revisions, or acceptance. Overall editorial responsibility rests with the journal’s Editors-in-Chief, who are supported by an expert Editorial Board.

Members of the editorial team and board may submit their own papers to the journal. In cases where an author is associated with the journal, the author will be removed from all editorial tasks for that paper and another member of the team will be assigned responsibility for overseeing peer review. A competing interest must also be declared within the submission and any resulting publication.


Author lists should be final at the time of article submission. All authors listed must have given prior approval to have their name attributed to the file(s) submitted and agree to publication. The corresponding author must ensure that all authors qualify for and have agreed to authorship. They are also responsible for informing all co-authors of relevant editorial information throughout the review process.

Who should be included as an author?

All authors should meet criteria for authorship, and all who meet criteria for authorship should be authors. Contributors who do not meet authorship criteria may be thanked in the Acknowledgements section with their permission. 

Following the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors guidelines, contributors who meet all of the following criteria should be authors:

  • Made substantial contributions to project conception or design, or to data acquisition, analysis or interpretation
  • Contributed to drafting or revising the article for intellectual content
  • Provided approval for the final version of the article
  • Provided approval for the final authorship list
  • Agreed to be accountable of for all aspects of the work

Competing Interests

PINS is committed to transparent and bias-free research. All authors, reviewers and editors are required to declare any interests that could compromise, conflict or influence the validity of the publication. Competing interests can take the form of both financial and non-financial relationships. Declarations of competing interests should cover at least the previous 5 years. Examples of competing interests include:

  • Inclusion of a member of the editorial board or team as an author
  • Receipt of payment in any form from an organization or individual related to the subject matter
  • Ownership of stocks or shares in organizations related to the subject matter
  • Receipt of grants or funding related to the subject matter
  • Membership of boards related to the subject matter
  • Holding or having applied for patents related to the subject matter
  • Having relationships that will hinder impartiality (e.g. colleague, family, mentor, supervisor, student, employer)
  • Having political, religious, ideological, or commercial interests

Research Ethics 

Research involving human subjects, human material, or human data, must have been performed in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki. Where applicable, projects must have been approved by an appropriate ethics committee. Authors must include a statement within the article text detailing this approval, including the following information as applicable to their article:

  • Name of the ethics committee or Institutional Review Board that reviewed the project
  • Reference number or date that the project was approved or deemed exempt
  • Information detailing the process of informed consent

Prior Publication

PINS accepts articles that have been loaded onto preprint servers, personal websites, or other informal communication channels. 

The journal also accepts material previously presented at conferences or published within conference proceedings, provided the article provides substantially more data, analysis, or discussion than the original conference paper. 

Authors may upload accepted manuscripts to an open platform under a CC BY license.  Authors must retain copyright to such postings.  Authors are encouraged to link any prior posting of their paper to the final published version within the journal if it is editorially accepted and published.

Corrections and Retractions

In accordance with guidelines from the Committee on Publication Ethics (where applicable), the Press handles different kinds of errors. All articles have their proofs checked prior to publication by the author/editor, which should ensure that content errors are not present. Please contact your editorial manager if an article needs correcting.

Post-publication changes are not permitted, unless there are exceptional circumstances. If an error is discovered in a published article then the publisher will assess whether a Correction paper or Retraction is required. Visit our Correction Policy page for more information.

Appeals, Complaints & Misconduct

Appeals, complaints, or allegations of misconduct will be taken with utmost seriousness, regardless of whether those involved are internal or external to the journal, or whether the submission in question is pre- or post-publication. If an allegation is made to the journal, it must also be passed on to the publisher, who will follow guidelines from the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) on how to address the nature of the problem.

Should an individual wish to submit an appeal, complaint or raise an issue of potential misconduct regarding the journal or its content, they should first read the full Appeals, Complaints, and Misconduct policy and then contact that editor-in-chief and/or the publisher to explain their concerns.